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Romney 26, Us 13, Paul Ryan 9, Washington 7, Chuck Todd 4, Dee Dee Myers 4, Virginia 3, Paris 3, Michigan 3, Iowa 3, New Hampshire 3, Atlanta 3, Massachusetts 3, Margaret Thatcher 3, David Brooks 3, Duvall Patrick 2, Klein 2, George W. Bush 2, Msnbc 2, Libya 2,
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  MSNBC    Meet the Press    News/Business. A moderator  
   interviews a leading public figure. (CC)  

    September 24, 2012
    1:00 - 2:00am PDT  

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i'm just going to go. this morning on "meet the press," the pressure is on as mitt romney stumbles. the president is widening his lead, six weeks before the election. where is the debate headed? he said he can't change washington from the inside. he can only change it from outside. well we're going to give him that chance in november, he's going outside. >> but it's rom any who spent perhaps his worst week of the campaign. on the defensive. after the release of his 2011 tax return and now this
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now-infamous recording from a may fundraiser. >> the 24% are with him. the government has the responsibility to care for them. >> a debate this morning about the 47%. taxes and government dependence. with two top surrogates for the candidate. democratic governor of massachusetts, duvall patrick and republican senator from new hampshire, kelly ayok. and then our political roundtable on the romney campaign under fire from romney conservatives what is the turn-around plan. are romney's troubles overstated? and what to look for as the candidates prepare for the debate. with a senior adviser to the romney campaign of democratic mayor of atlanta. and host of msnbc's "morning joe," joe scarborough and dee dee myers and chuck todd about what new polls in the
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battleground states tell us about the race. good sunday morning, election day is 44 days away. but early voting starts soon in several key battleground states. polls showing a small pool of undecided voters left. it's important for mitt romney as he tries to steady his campaign before the all-important presidential debates begin october 3rd. joining me two top surrogates, democratic governor of massachusetts, duvall patrick and the republican senator from new hampshire, kelly ayotte. good to have you here. a lot to get to. let's start with the issue of taxes and mitt romney's tax returns he released showing in 2011 he paid an effective tax rate of 14%. he didn't have a job, this was interest income.
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governor, should this end the debate or should there be more? >> i understand people's interest in and in fact curiosity about mitt romney's tax returns. think it was his dad who said that tax returns for presidential candidates should be produced way back many years and i think he produced 20 years' worth of tax returns or more. when he was being considered for vice president. but the more i think important issue is what is it he plans to do with my taxes and yours and everybody else's? he has a tax plan out there where he's talking about $5 trillion in tax cuts. adding to the deficit. no way to pay for that and no idea about how, what the impact is on the middle class. >> the question of more returns and what some of the overseas holdings were, you don't think that's an appropriate place to -- >> i think it's a fair question. i think the bigger question is what is it he plans to do with everybody else's taxes. >> ez ra klein asked a bigger-picture question as well in his column in the "washington post." i want to put a portion up on the screen. in 2011 romney made $14 million while being unemployed. klein writes compare romney to sangle mother of two who works
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full time at walmart who takes the earned income tax credit and whose children get health insurance through medicaid. romney said she's not taking personal responsibility, going back to the 47% comment. he said he couldn't get her to take personal responsibility if he tried. and yet romney is someone who doesn't have to take personal responsibility for earning money any more. he's beyond all of that and he's carried that belief into his policy proposal, his policy platform matches his comments, he won't raise taxes on the rich. but he wants to cut medicaid by over $1 trillion in the next decade. >> what governor romney wants, he wants to make sure the mother has a good job, a better paying job. where we are in this economy, think about it, we've added 15 billion people to the food stamp rolls, excuse me, million, during this presidency, we now have 47 million people on food stamps, it's unfortunate. these people want to get off food stamps, and have the good jobs, but where the economy is
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right now, so many people have lost hope. the last jobs report showed for every job added, four people have left the workforce because the president, let's not forget the president and democrats were in charge for the first two years. the policies they passed didn't deal with where we are in the economy. think about the stimulus. >> i want to talk specifically about tax returns. 14% in an effective tax rate. does that make it harder for governor romney to reach out to average americans and say, i get you. >> governor romney is reaching out to average americans with a plan to get people working again. because the president's policies have not worked. he tried, but we talked about the stimulus, his team represented we'd be below 6%. we'd had over 43 months of over 8% unemployment. the lowest labor participation rate, people are leaving the workforce, so where governor romney is saying to people, he
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wants opportunity. he wants the upward mobility for that mother. >> you talk about upward mobility. that's not something we saw out of his speech he gave back in july at a fundraiser to wealthy donors. this where the 47% came from. and in context here, let's play a portion of that, to see exactly ha his, what his vision was. >> i said the 47% were with him who are, who believe that they're victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them. who believe that they're entitled to health care, to food, to housing. to you name it. that's entitlement. and the government should do it. and they will vote for this president, no matter what. it's responsibility. >> senator, they see themselves as victims. he now says that he's really for the 100% in america. is anybody going to buy that, given that dim vision of half the country? >> you know, david, that certainly was a political analysis at a fundraiser, buttis
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not a governing philosophy. it's different from this president, to get our economy moving. we have to look back at the policies of this president and where we are as an economy. >> before we get to that particular argument, do you see 47% of the country that receives government dependence? do you think they see themselves as victims? >> whey see is what the governor sees, i see 15 million more people on food stamps that don't want to be enter. i see 47 million of americans overall on food stamps that want a good job, they don't want to be on unemployment. but where we are with the policies under this administration, the tax regulatory policies, the more government spending, adding $5 trillion to the debt, those opportunities aren't there for them and that's what this election is about. >> it's shocking to me that a candidate could aspire to be president by turning his back on half the country. and i think that's what came through. i think i can tell you as someone who grew up on welfare, who spent some time on food
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stamps, my mother was just the kind of person that i think the senator is describing. who was aspiring. to get to a better place. to get her g.e.d., to get her job, to stand on her own two feet and the notion that she or we or people like us, would be belittled while we needed some help to be able to stand on or own two feet is exactly what i think governor romney is conveying. >> do you think that president obama has not said to group of donors, look, there's certain segments of the republican electorate that are just not going to vote for me? why shouldn't this be seen as political analysis and not a governing philosophy. >> what the president has done most importantly is governed for all the people. he's advanced policies that are not popular with his base. but he did them because he thought they were posh for the future of this country -- important for the future of this country. >> let's talk specifically, senator about, some of the
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issues the 47% gets to the question of dpost dependence. as you referenced, here are a couple of the snapshots of government dependence nationally that have raised some eyebrows and that indeed governor romney has talked b. you talk about food stamps now, nearly 47 million americans on food stamps, up dramatically from four years ago. here's a broader picture from the "wall street journal" and the census bureau. if you go back to the early '80s and upwards, 49% now receiving some kind of government benefit. is government dependence at a place where it's out of control? >> well, david, think where we are is that too many people have to rely on food stamps or unemployment benefits, instead of a good job. that's what this comes down to. to think that so many people have left the workforce when you look at the august report where every job added, four people have left. with over 43 straight months of over 8% unemployment. let's not forget the president and the democrats had two years, what did they do? they passed health care reform
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where the president represented that premiums would go down, they've gone up. this week we've got a report from cbo that six million middle class americans will get hit by the tax penalties in the president's health care reform. so the policies that he pushed when they were in charge. did not address the problems and that's why we need new leadership of making sure that we get people working and again. someone who has the private-sector experience to turn the economy around. >> i want to agree with some of what the senator has said about the fact that more people on food stamps, ba because we're in a terrible economy and more people need a way forward. i would submit that most of those people, if not all, want a job and we have to be about strengthening this economy. i think adding some $4.6 million private-sector jobs in the last two years as the president has, more in that time than george w. bush added in eight years, is a definite and indeed a profound example of the progress that we're making. and the policies that are on offer, by governor romney are
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policies that have shown themselves to fail. so the notion of benefitting the very fortunate, exclusively and letting it trickle down to everybody else, is something that has been shown to fail in the past. we should not go back. >> senator, a bigger question, partly a political question. i know you're a supporter of governor romney's campaigning forum in new hampshire. but here's a reality. he offered policy analysis on 47% of this country, including a lot of republican voters, people who receive entitlements through social security and medicare that they paid into. he's talking about this group of people, will not take personal responsibility. it betrayed a lack of understanding of how the government works, how america works. the american work ethic. do you think he needs to go beyond saying this was inelegant. so saying he was flat wrong? >> i have to say this, david, i absolutely disagree with your analysis of this. i campaigned with him, i knows he cares about every single american in this country and that he has a vision, unlike this president, where we are today.
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we're declining. we're need to come out of this to think about where we are with this president has more months of over 8% unemployment than the last 11 presidents combined. this, you think about governor romney. wants opportunity. wants upward mobility. wants people to have the good-paying job. and that is what his whole campaign is about. by the way, if you think about the policies of the last two years, all they brought us is more unemployment. what we need is people to have a good-paying job. i hear from small business every day, the right tax regulatory policies, these are mom-and-pop businesses that feel burdened by this administration. >> part of it he was talking about 47% of american who is pay no federal income tax and too dependant on the government -- his words -- to do everything for them. housing, food, et cetera, you're not being responsible to that point. on the tax question i pose this question in the senate, in the virginia senate debate between tim cain and george allen.
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they were talking about whether there should be a minimum federal income tax. this is how tim kane answered the question. >> do you believe everyone in virginia should pay something in federal incox tax. >> would you be open to that, governor? >> maybe, the first i'm hearing about it. should everybody have skin in the game? >> well, that's where i was going. i think we go to this question of taxes, tax cuts, tax increases and so forth. too fast. we, it seems to me the first question ought to be, what is it we want government to do and not do? what's the sensible way and fair way to pay for that? i really believe in this notion, just as president does, of common as you and common destiny. that we all have stake in educating our kids. we all have a stake in assuring that this country is well defended. we all have a stake in investing in the infrastructure that creates a platform for economic
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growth and opportunity. we all have a stake in the american dream. we used to come together around that the kind of sharp, poisonous political discourse that characterizes so much of what goes on in the congress, i mean no disrespect, senator, personal disrespect in, no disrespect at all in fact, not just personal in saying that. you think that the country is hungry for a kind of a conviction-based leadership. frankly the kind of leadership -- >> the irony of this of course, the president ran as someone who z going to unite people. but everything when you listen to the way that he's trying to divide us. you know whether it's rich versus poor, have's versus have-not's. and wanting to bring people together. blaming republicans, all the problems on other areas 0 other people. think about the comment this week about you can't change washington from the inside. he had two years in charge. i agree with the governor, we do need leadership that unites and we do need leadership of someone
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who is thinking about making sure that we have those opportunities so that we're not in a position where 47% -- >> you're not blaming president for pitting classes against each other. after governor romney said 47% of the country are freeloaders who won't take personal responsibility. >> just to hear what the governor is saying here, i certainly respect what essaying but if you look at what the president has said and what he's done. of where we are. his leadership on his policies have failed and he has not been the uniting force that we need to get things done. >> on one point, the issue of the president's record, it has to do with high unemployment. and something that caught our eye this week as we were looking, this comment from the chairman of the congress at black caucus, manuel cleaver, congressman from missouri spoke on monday. this is what he wrote. i'm supposed to say he doesn't get a pass but i'm not going to say 2456789 look as the chair of the black caucus, i've got to tell you we're always hesitant to criticize the president. with 14% black unemployment. if we had a white president, we
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would be marching around the white house. pretty stinging criticism from the chairman of the black caucus. >> i respect the chairman of the black caucus and the fact that there is 14%, if that's the right number, unemployment among black people. among young people, the unemployment rate is higher than the national average as well. nobody is prepared to declare victory. we've had the worst economic environment in a generation or two. since the great depression and that was caused by the way, by some of the very policies that governor romney is urging on the country today. this president has turned that around. this president has shown that he's able to swim against the current and make some change. and so we see more people with health care in this country than ever before. more people, more private-sector jobs in the last two years than the previous eight. we've seen the automobile industry saved. we've seen the financial industry saved. we've seen the country brought back from the brink of depression. are we done?
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of course not, of course not. but we're certainly on a about thor course and pointed in the right direction. >> david, i guess what i heard was, that this president needs more time. but where we are, if you think about it, this is the worst economic recovery since world war ii and it's been an anemic recovery. when they had full charge of the congress, they pushed forward a health care bill where people are paying more for premiums. people are going to be hit, middle class hit with the tax penalty. where the regulatory climate for this country, small businesses, they're not going to create the job and the governor has a plan to make sure that we simplify lower rates. make it a better tax climate for everyone, for everyone and make sure that we get people to work. a regulatory climate where small businesses want to thrive and grow. it's been the opposite as the president, i would say he tried, but his policies failed. >> let me end on one issue that's important to us as nbc news, that's the issue of education, a big summit we're beginning, "education nation" today. >> thank you for doing that.
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>> it's important, we certainly are committed to it part of that is a conversation with president obama, that "the today show's" savannah guthrie conducted. i want to play a portion of that about where the political debate is now. >> mitt romney said that president obama has chosen his side in this fight. that you sided with the unions. and another time last spring, he said he can't talk of reform while indulging in groups that block it. >> well, you know, i think governor romney and a numb of folks try to politicize the issue and do a lot of teacher-bashing. when i meet teachers all across the country, they're so devoted, so dedicated to their kids. and what we've tried to do is actually break through this left-right conservative-liberal gridlock and that's what my key reform has been all about. a race to the top. >> more of that education nation interview with president obama tuesday and wednesday on the "today show." plus a live conversation with governor romney at education nation, that summit on tuesday.
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quickly from both of you. governor, have we moved beyond this pro union anti-union debate? >> we better, in massachusetts our students are number one in the nation in student achievement and have been for each of the last now years. we have the most unionized education system, i think in the country. the unions are intent at the table with us on reform for more than a decade. we moved a bill a couple of years ago to try to close the achievement gap and they were right there with us. >> senator? >> i would ask mayor emmanuel where we are right now on the unions this is clearly an important issue on the chicago strike and obviously governor romney believes kids first, unions last. i think where condoleezza rice hit it at our convention, that giving parents, empowering parents with school choice, with under-performing schools, minority students, poor students, that's the civil rights issue of this tile and i
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think unfortunately in the areas of d.c. opportunity scholarship turned his back on it. that's where we need to go and governor romney supports that. >> a note to our viewers, a question that comes up a lot. we have longstanding invitation for president obama to appear on this program and share his views about this important campaign and we hope he will choose to do so before this election. if you missed mitt romney's interview a few weeks ago, see it on nbcnews.com. coming up, can mitt romney turn the campaign around? is there time to reshape the race? particularly with early voting starting. joining us on the roundtable, atlanta mayor and msnbc's joe scarborough, and david brooks and dee dee myers, plus, nbc's chuck todd joins us to break down new polls in the battleground states. [ male announcer ] if you stash tissues
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coming up, what the new polls in the battleground states tell us about the state of the race, chuck todd starts off our round table right after this break.
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here tonight's top story. mitt romney on friday released his 2011 tax returns which showed he paid a 14% tax rate. just a little less than what restaurants add on for parties of six or more. the 14% tax rate romney paid is less than the 20% paid by the average american. how did he pay such a low rate? he claimed 47% of americans as dependants. >> we're back, that was "saturday night live" having some fun with mitt romney and the tax debate. we'll get into it with the round table.
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joining us, joe scarborough. and babe buchanan, democratic strategist, dee dee myers, "new york times" columnist, david brooks and the democratic mayor of atlanta, kaseem reed. first you saw him lurking in the background of dee dee myers shot, our political director chuck todd is here with new polls in the battleground states. when team romney said the head-to-head matchup nationally is tight, that's not the full story, chuck? >> it isn't. look at the battleground polls, this is everything that's coming out in the last week in different states. i want to highlight a couple here. look at michigan, 14-point gap for the president, obviously the republican was like to try to put michigan in play. it doesn't look like it's the case. look at iowa, i want to highlight that, iowa has been a toss-up state. something in the middle of the
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battleground, we've decided it's no longer in the battleground, the eight-point lead you now put it in president obama's column. so he sits there 243. ha does that mean? it means he's just one state away from 270. if you just give him florida, he sits at 272. but if you look at virginia and ohio, two states the president had, seven-point leads, and you give him those two, excuse me here -- and it puts him at 274. so he's now we're sitting there we've shrunk the battleground, we've put the president obviously sitting there with a top lead. what's it all done? because of one thing and that's because of economic optimism. i want to show something from our last nbc/"wall street journal," 42% of have optimistic views that the economy is going to get better in the next three months. >> and the narrative. here's the "detroit free press," about the tape recording about the 47%. the headline, romney's 47% remark, will it sink the
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campaign? joe scarborough, how much trouble is the romney campaign in this morning and what change it is? >> they're in a lot of trouble this morning but thank god that the election is about 47 days off. they are tied in the nal polls and we republicans believe we conservatives still believe that a rising tide lifts all boats. we've got four debates coming up. i personally think romney is a very calculating, data-driven guy. you tell him you got 90 seconds to aps a question on libya. he's going to have a good answer. he's going to do well in the deets baits. i think ryan is going to do well in the debates. we've got a long way to go. it's not over. that said, the trajectory of the campaign has to change. this has been a horrific week for him even the romney people behind the scenes will tell you. the libya press conference was a nightmare for him, even worse than the 47% video. they've got to right the ship. if they do, long way to go. >> the romney campaign in fact,
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the candidate himself telling "60 minutes" tonight there's no need for a turn-around in this campaign. david brooks, you wrote a stinging column that got a lot of attention, the headline is "thurston howell" referring to "gilligan's island." your comment about the 47%. the comment suggests that he doesn't know much about the country inhabits who are these freeload sners the iraq war veteran who goes to the v.a., the stoo unt going to get a loan for college. the retiree on social security or medicare. i think he's a kind, decent man who pretends to be something he's not. he's running a depressingly inept presidential campaign. your entitlement reform ideas are great. but when will the incompetence stop? >> i'm sitting there while he's talking, can't fake it. if you don't have the passion
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for those type of guns, you can't write tom clancy novels, mitt romney does not have a passion for the kind of stuff he's talking about. he's a problem-solver. he's a nonideological person running in an extremely ideological age. he's faking it. he should be a power-point guy, saying i'm making a sales pitch to the country. you don't have to love me. i would do a more wonky and detailed thing than he's done so far. >> do you have to look at the 47% comment, that went beyond political analysis and said it was political analysis, not a governing philosophy. this was inelegant. do you have to somehow make amends in way he's not done yet? >> you know, the press is not going to change and of course our opponents aren't. want to mischaracterize what he said. what he's say something the 47% is going to be voting. the solid base of the president. it included in those people, are
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people i'm going to have a hard time reaching. you know there's people who dependant on government. so who even feel they're owed something by government. many of them don't pay income tax. my message doesn't work for them. that's all he was saying. he he never said he didn't care about them. >> he said i don't have to worry about them. >> that's a direct quote. >> in general election. can't worry about them, he has to worry about the 6%. sure, i would like to take off the cream on the 47, one poll has the president down to 46. but his focus in the general election is the 6% he can get. that he has a terrific chance of getting and he will fight for them. as president he will fight for those who are dependant on government. this president has given us a terrible record. americans can't get off their dependency and it's longer and longer. more difficult. there's no jobs to get them out what mitt romney offers to those americans is way, a ladder to climb out of that mess. opportunity and jobs again.
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>> is that how you see his comments this week, the 47%? >> i don't think is a question of mischaracterization. all you have to do is listen to the whole piece. his comments were terrible. he implied 47% of the people are basically freeloaders, that's what he implied. it was offensive. this isn't a case of mischaracterization. what it shows is that republicans have a candidate that's defective and it shouldn't be surprising to them. he's made these mistakes repeatedly. the best analysis of this election this year that i've heard was from a republican friend that i was having dinner with. he said that this guy is defective. he said he's like being a bad nascar driver on a rich team. he said no matter how good the car is, no matter how bad the pit crew is, the driver has to drive the car. this guy puts it on the wall every single time. wait a minute, man, i let you speak. he puts it on the wall when he says let gm go bankrupt. he puts it on the wall when he says let 47% of the people i don't have to concern myself with. he puts it on the wall when he travels across the east, goes to
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the uk, offends one of our strongest allies. he repeatedly puts ton the wall and makes mistakes and that's why we're where we are, 44 days out. >> dee dee, the political prism through which to look at this is what is his biggest negative he has to deal with does he connect with average voters. >> does he have any understanding at all life outside the bubble that he's lived in? there's no point in his life. with the possible exception with his one admission to paris where he's gotten himself outside of his comfort zone -- >> going to paris? the suburbs of paris? >> i'm not saying he likes the french. don't get me wrong. but at every turn of his life. he's been generous, it's always within the context of a very limited universe. so he has no feel for what real people are going through. when those two engage -- in action -- every turn of this campaign when he has spoken. how does he enjoy sport?
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he likes to hang out with the team owners. you know when he travels around, he's most comfortable -- >> he calls sports -- sport. >> one point. we have real -- fundraisers, that's where he goes off script and talks more expansively about what his plans are. >> look at people he's helped, he's helped alcoholic mormons, illegal immigrants. he's nursed kids who are dying. he gave $4 million to charity in one year. if you look at his private life. all through his life. he's given a lot of money. if you -- >> we know in 2011 he -- >> he has the perfect life story for compassionate conservative campaign because he's lived that life. and what's the problem is, he's running a different campaign. george bush, ronald reagan, jack kemp, they looked to people in the community colleges and said okay, they're maybe on food stamps, but taking two buses, working two jobs and --
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>> that's the problem with the 47%. i really don't think that's going to change a vote. i really don't. i do believe, though, that it is deflated conservatives at "the wall street journal." conservatives like david, conservatives like myself, conservatives on talk radio. we believe in smaller government because we believe, like jack kemp, believed, like ronald reagan believed, like margaret thatcher believed, that's how you help the most people. i will say still without apology, i believe a rising tide lifts all boats. i believe you unshackle individuals and they can prosper in this country, what's so disturbing about that video -- is like you said, david, mitt romney doesn't get it, he doesn't believe it. and that's what comes. margaret thatcher, shop keeper's daughter would have never said that in a million years. >> never. and you know this is like 4-1, i should be allowed to speak for each one of these people here. >> wait, wait -- >> you don't like the margaret
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thatcher fan or a ronald reagan fan? >> let me make a point. >> i'm for a small government conservative. >> on this set you appear to be one of the four. >> i'm also with "the wall street journal" editorial page. i'm with every conservative i'm with rush, i'm with you name the conservative, you have my concern. so please don't characterize me as being one of these four. >> i love them all. >> first of all you know to characterize the personal life of mitt romney as dee dee has, is to show that she does not know the man. she does 23409 know what he has done. because this is a man who has spent a life in serving others, that is the basis of what he believes and he has done it. number two, number two, we have, we have, we are in perilous times in this country. we are looking at financial ruin. we are looking at dependency. we're a nation of people dependant on their government. and that is what barack obama
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gives us, he promises that in four more years. this election will decide if we take that path or with mitt romney we take a pap where we allow those, those who are in trouble. those relying on food stamps. this is just, these are political talking points more than being responsive to some of the political reality we can show it on the screen. the unfavorable rating of mitt romney. you understand how campaigns operate. look at his high unfavorable ratings at 50%, the highest of any candidate running in recent memory. this is an image problem that his philosophical statements in this speech in may to fundraisers, only ex-as baits. >> it's because of the exacerbates. >> it's because of the way's been falsely interpreted. >> by joe scarborough? >> i'm sorry, i've got to cut this off. >> david brooks --
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>> which side are you on? you are taking this country -- >> the "wall street journal" editorial page. laura ingram, rush limbaugh,ky go on and on -- >> if you want to blame the media for mitt romney's inept campaign, peggy noonan said it best this is a nightmare of a campaign. and the most troubling thing is it's not that a lot of us republicans don't think he can win, we do believe he can win. but when he says he has no need to turn this campaign around after a disastrous week, where you see ohio slipping away, wisconsin slipping away? iowa slipping away, michigan slipping away? that's a political concern. not an ideological concern, that's a political concern. >> let me step back for a second. david brooks you're looking at the substantive debate taking place here about the records of two candidates, biographies of two candidates, but also where we are politically in the state of this campaign. if we pull back, how do you diagnose where he goes next? where he tries to go next?
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>> he has to look at what the president's weakness is. he's never going to win a popularity contest. the president's weakness is that he has no second-term agenda. he put out a great album in 2008. he doesn't have an agenda now. because he's intellectually exhausted. i think you have to say, okay, here's my agenda. you have to go extremely wonky. you know something about this campaign, the best political speech of this whole campaign, the bill clinton's, was the wonkiest speech. there's a hunger for that kind of stuff. that should be his heelhouse power point. i'm going to reform four institutions, tax code, entitlements, energy and make the political system work. don't love me, but i will do these four products for you. >> the problem is that you can't run for president saying, i'll tell you later. hasn't told us. >> you need to tell barack obama that. >> i tell you what, what he hasn't told us is how do you take a $5 trillion tax cut in this economy and then spend an additional $1 million to $2 million on defense spending, expand the military by 100,000
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troops and pay for it without costing the middle class? >> come on. >> all he says is -- >> what is, all he says is we'll tell you later. >> what is the most significant law barack obama has proposed for a second term? >> for the second term he's been focused on jobs. >> and you say -- >> wait a minute. >> the american jobs act. is a legitimate proposal that is based primarily around infrastructure, which republicans and democrats have traditionally agreed on. if you go to the -- >> what i tell you what. it kept the country from going into a great depression. i'll tell you what, oh yes it did. under your guy, george bush, we lost 3.5 million jobs. >> hold on, hold on. wait a minute. >> i'll go to joe. >> it would be -- [ people talking at the same time ] >> barack obama has produced more net private-sector jobs
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than george w. bush. if we want to go to the facts and be patriots and put the country first, we can look at the american recovery and reinvestment act. 10% of the $780 billion spent generated 35% of all the jobs. >> what are the pillars of a second term? for president obama? >> well first of all there is no pillar of his second term. he is, you know i use the example in 2008 he was elvis 1957. 2012, he's looking more like elvis in ' 77. he's singing the old hits, doesn't believe it himself. he president didn't bring up the stimulus act. if it was such a great boon for american workers, he would have brought it up. he didn't bring up obama care. he has no plan over the next four years, i agree with david. if mitt romney wants to win, he needs to come forward and tell people -- how he can get them back to work. we can talk about medicare reform, which i believe in.
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we can talk about reducing the debt. which i fought for for 15 years. but until you tell people how you're requesting to get them back to work, how you're going to help the working class do better, how you're going to help people pay for their children's education, they're not going to listen to you. >> there's no question in the romney campaign, we're bringing out the details as we speak. there's no question there to go to this gentleman's point, what the legacy of barack obama has been, is quite clear. more and more debt placed on american people. millions and millions of people now on food stamps, the only way they can pay for their families. and in embassies under siege. that's what we got from him. going back to the political points this is where the romney campaign is today. we are in a dead heat nationally. the momentum is ours, you see that the president's numbers have come down. mitt romney's numbers are coming up. our polls and other polls out here have the one state after another. the close states swing states as a dead heat.
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or within the margin of error. so this is -- >> no need for a turn-around. >> we are five weeks out around we and we're are in a dead heat against the president of united states. >> not to interrupt, what's the message? >> the message is a clear one. >> these are the two paths here this is the foundation, the philosophy of the two campaigns. one towards more and more dependant nation. the other towards a people that are self-reliant. where they can be proud of the work they, do the product they produce. >> let me get a break in here. we'll have more of this look forward to the debates. how this, this debate will play out when they go head to head, with our roundtable after this. both worlds.
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we're back with the roundtable. david, we've been talking about the need for governor romney to win some of the policy debates. you talked about entitlements. paul ryan appeared before the aarp convention talking about medicare. not exactly a great reception. watch. >> the first step to a stronger medicare is to repeal obama care. because it represents the worst of both worlds. >> i had a feeling there would be mixed reaction so let me get into it. >> paul ryan doesn't shrink from a fight. talking about entitlements, he did it there. the promise was he's going to take on medicare and win the fight. does it work? >> the passivity works.
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every time i get sick of republicans and i hear the aarp and i'm glad i'm not a democrat. the basic formula here, which ryan is laying out is the average medicare recipient over the course of their life pays in about $150,000. they get out, people differ, somewhere between $250 now and $35,000. so the gap is being put on the next generation. that's the essential problem he's trying to lay out. that's elm bedded in his plan. i think it's a pretty good plan. but they're not making the argument for that plan. for reasons which i guess i understand politically. if you're going to embrace ryan, argue for vienna. the democrats are running a false scare campaign. not the one they're running on now. i think it's crucial to, to solve this problem. and they have a plan which unfortunately romney/ryan not talking about. >> let's tip our hat to paul ryan, because you hear that he
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got booed at aarp. but he went through. the demographics, he went through the numbers, he explained. it was not about ideological. it was about how math. about how medicare was going bankrupt. if the aarp audience wanted to boo him, that's not a paul ryan's people. that's a problem of people who is heads continue to get stuck in the sand. i wish mitt romney would show that courage. maybe he will. >> that's one of the complaints you're hearing from republicans that people, the base looked at the choice of ryan and said okay, great. now the romney campaign is going to take it on. and instead of romney becoming more like ryan, the opposite has happened. you saw ryan in that clip talking about the details and that's not something we're seeing the campaign do on a regular basis. >> this is about more than paul ryan being booed by the aarp. this is about the american people not wanting to privatize medicare after they've been paying into it paul ryan is make all the presentations he wants and lay out the fact.
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but the president did extend medicare by eight years and folks aren't buying i'm going to take care of people currently on the system, we're going to change it forever for everybody else. >> so -- >> you know we have to do that. >> we have to do it as part of an overall budget deal. a $4 trillion deal. where we put everything on the table. if we want to get a deal, let's get an overall global deal that puts $4 trillion on the table that includes revenue raises. >> paul ryan -- >> $4 trillion is a drop in the bucket. >> before you saw ridiculous. where it's $4 trillion or $6 trillion to get a budget deal we have to have revenue-raising measures. you cannot implement paul ryan's plan while not allowing for any increases -- >> first of all, you know, the governor romney showed enormous courage when he picked paul ryan for just this reason because he's willing to engage that battle. we know we have a president who
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is just this week said you can't do it. i can't do it. that this, it's you can't change washington from the inside. he has given up. we know on medicare, we have 12 years before we're going to be facing bankruptcy and the president took $716 billion. took it out and put it in obama care. >> that's flat-out not true. >>s did true. >> paul ryan did not, did the same thing. medicare, being moved around. what we will do is the president will put that $716 right back in to medicare. >> when are we going to solve these problems? the president enjoys all of those perks of the office. when is he going to do heavy lifting? we have medicare in serious trouble. we have a nation heading to bankruptcy and what's he say? i can't do it. >> can i -- hold on. >> in two years. >> the mayor just laid out the solution. wooer going to have a deal at some point. probably after some sort of national fiscal crisis that republicans are going to raise revenue. the doctors are going to agree to restructure medicare. they're probably not going to do it before a big national
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bankruptcy, because it's politically hard. we'll solve it after a big national crisis. >> we'll have a big national debate. dee dee you've been through this with a candidate before. look at this from politico in terms of the anticipation of these debates. the nerms quite high. 83% saying they plan to wind chill all or some. is there too much being built into these debates in terms of potential game-changers? >> people look at the history of debates, they don't change the dynamic of the race, but mitt romney is taking it seriously, it's possibly his last opportunity to make a big impression so he's sort of preparing for this months ago. he spent a lot of time as well he should. he has proven himself to be a good debater. he's a fact and figures guy, he practices and works very hard. he won 16 of the 20 debates as the obama campaign will tell you in their effort to lower expectations in the republican primary. and challengers tend to do well by being on stage with the incumbent, they look presidential.
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>> can romney still win? >> of course he can still win. we've got four debates left. 45 days left. dee dee knows better than anybody else. the old saying, harrod mcmillan who said in politics a week is a lifetime. give anybody 40, 45 days and they can change everything. the biggest concern is the attitude in mitt romney's head right now. when he says, that they don't need to turn the campaign around, when you have stuart, stevens and others saying full steam ahead, that's a serious problem. if they change the trajectory and start getting specific like bay said they were going to, he can win. >> on the debates, this is what's e. we're going to be able to challenge th record. to make his start to defending this lousy record to explain why he is unable to create jobs and give up things to americans, let him defend one in six americans in importanty. one in certain americans in food
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stamps. that's a debate we welcome. something the media -- >> this is getting serious. can we have a feel-good moment? >> we got to tip a cap quite literally to the playoff-bound nationals, the washington nationals, the first time that washington has had a playoff team since 1933 when i was a little boy. they've been so great to follow. fdr was president when they were playing the giants in the world series that year. he said i'll have sit on both sides to keep it even. washington, going all the way. thank you all, great discussion, before we go, a programming note, can you watch presspass, conversation on our blog. the crisis facing american's young people and their efforts for the boys and girls clubs of america at nbcmeetthepress.com.
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